Jaisalmer Fort and Gadsisar Lake in the Thar Desert, Rajasthan, India.
After the 'White City' of Udaipur, the 'Pink City' of Jaipur, the 'Blue City' of Jodhpur comes the 'Golden City' of Jaisalmer. Originally the entire town of Jaisalmer was enclosed in the yellow sandstone fort (these days it's about 25% of the population) and, of course, made of the same sandstone that glowed gold in the late afternoon light, so the name is realistic as well as romantic.
Gadsisar Lake is an artificial rainwater pool built in 1400 AD to provide the town's entire supply of water. The lake is surrounded by temples, shrines, statues and other attractive structures such as the Gate of Tillon, in the cenre of the picture above.
Jaisalmer Fort built in 1156 and still occupied by a quarter of the town's residents.
Jaisalmer's Fort contains - apart from a slightly medieval, claustrophobic ambience - a number of tourist attractions such as the Raj Mahal (Royal Palace), several interesting temples and some very old, elaborately ornate merchant's houses, Havelis, that come pretty close to equalling any Maharaja's love of dazzling colour and complex design. One of the best-preserved examples is Patwa Haveli.
An unknown but typical Haveli exterior. Some are hotels of differing standards.
A Jaisalmer potter. Other than exploring Jaisalmer fort, town and lake, meeting colourful Rajasthani people can be a highlight of a trip to this region. Then there are the popular camel safaris into the Thar Desert lasting anything from an hour to a couple of weeks, though three days seems like enough to us!
Another classic Rajasthani women in bright colours (all the better to track them in the desert) and heavy silver jewellry.
A village wall - near Jaisalmer - painted in startling colours by the womenfolk. Compare these colours with those of the woman above. Jaisalmer Camel Safari Pictures.
Flights: Currently there are some limited flights to an ex-military airstrip though soon there should be a new civilian airport. Otherwise Jodhpur Airport is the nearest (300 kms away), with flights from Delhi, Mumbai, Jaipur and Udaipur.
Rail: Trains run to/from Jodhpur, Jaipur, Bikaner, Ajmer, Delhi and Mumbai.
Bus: Buses go to Jaisalmer from all Rajasthan towns and cities.